Mind responds to statement by Philip Davies MP
Posted Friday 17 June 2011
Today, Conservative MP Philip Davies suggested that disabled people should offer to work below minimum wage so they get a job when competing with able-bodied people. He quoted a visit to a Mind association in his statement.
Mind’s Director of External Relations Sophie Corlett said:
It is a preposterous suggestion that someone who has a mental health problem should be prepared to accept less than minimum wage to get their foot in the door with an employer. People with mental health problems should not be considered a source of cheap labour and should be paid appropriately for the jobs they do.
It is simply unacceptable that fewer than 4 in 10 employers will currently consider employing someone with a mental health problem. We should be trying to educate employers and challenge negative attitudes towards mental health problems rather than forcing people with mental health problems to undercut their way in to the workforce.
Mind has found that over 50 per cent of people with mental health problems are living on a weekly household income of less than £200 - what the Government defines as 'living on the poverty line.’ Paying people with mental health problems less money than non-disabled people will not help them into work, it will just widen the poverty gap.
- BBC News: MP says minimum wage a hindrance to disabled jobseekers
- Channel 4 News: Disabled people 'should work for less', says Tory MP
- Sky News: MP: Disabled should be able to work for less
- The Mirror: Tory MP suggests disabled offer to work for below minimum wage
- Newsnight: Philip Davies debates with Liz Sayce of RADAR (iPlayer)
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